11 Insider tips on how to improve your wifi signal
Having trouble with your WiFi signal again?
With over 88% of the Australian population using the internet and a global speed ranking of 55, connectivity is bound to have some issues. But as internet signals drop out for no apparent reason, getting frustrated can seem like second nature.
With stronger networks and faster speeds predicted by 2020, good news is on the horizon. But until that time, there are a few ways you can improve your WiFi signal and network performance:
1. Locate the best place for your router
If you’re a designer, having your router out in the open may clash with your aesthetic. But if you want and need the best WiFi signal, you’ll have to deal with it.
Make sure your router is in the centre of your home so that you have coverage everywhere. If it doesn’t lay flat on a surface, consider elevating it and mounting your router on a wall for better coverage.
2. Try to avoid interference
Routers have a number of elements at work against them. The appliances in your home or office can interfere with the signal. A dual-band router can assist, but that’s not always the solution. Try and keep your router away from appliances and things like cordless phones to ensure you are getting the best signal at all times.
3. Find the right channel
The routers in other buildings or nearby homes may also interfere with your WiFi signal. Wireless routers can operate on a number of channels, so finding the right one for your space will save you some headaches. Try using WiFi Analyzer to locate the best channel.
4. Keep it secure
Your neighbours or people nearby who want to siphon your internet connection can mess with your signal if they know what they are doing. Make sure you lock down your network and hide your SSID. Also, enable WPA2 password protection.
5. Control your bandwidth applications
There are certain applications that will use a lot of bandwidth, making it difficult for everyone else to get a strong internet connection. Online gaming, Netflix, video chats and other applications should be put in order of Quality of Service (QoS). This will help you prioritise applications so the most important apps get the most bandwidth.
6. Boost your signal
This tip requires a bit of “hacking”, but you can boost your signal by installing DD-WRT firmware. Your signal will be boosted and you will gain additional security improvements. This helps to access the network from longer distances, so you can have that party outside with no interruptions to your WiFi!
7. Increase your range
There are a few different things you can do to extend your range. You have two alternatives: use DIY tricks, or get yourself a range extender. A range extender will help your WiFi connection stay strong in and around your home. A directional antenna may also boost the performance of your WiFi signals.
8. Set a reboot schedule
If you find yourself having to repeatedly reboot your router from time to time, putting it on an automatic schedule can be helpful. Put it on a timer to reboot when you don’t usually use the internet (when you’re sleeping). This way, it will reboot on its own, and you won’t have to worry about interruptions to your WiFi signal, especially if the router is in a spot that is not easily accessible.
9. Avoid network overload
If you have a large family, chances are your network is being used triple time. When you are having an event, or one of the kids are having a study session, that’s additional use of your WiFi. This may cause your network to become overloaded, and devices will disconnect. One way to ease this problem is to take some devices off the network that you aren’t using. You can also use software that controls bandwidth to prevent dropping.
10. Get a new router
If you’ve had your router for a number of years, there’s no question – it’s outdated. You want to make sure you are capitalizing on your bandwidth, so getting an up-to-date router that is more efficient can work wonders.
11. Update your firmware or network driver
This is an easy fix. If you are experiencing issues and you have a fairly new router, update the network driver and you should be good to go.
These insider tips are quick ways to improve your WiFi signal and keep the frustrations of low bandwidth or dropped signals away!
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